Synopsis by Mark Deming
Mette Beckmann was the wife of Valdemar Beckmann, the son of a wealthy Danish family who owned a successful shipbuilding firm in Portugal; Valdemar inherited his family's fortune, and Mette lived a life of luxury from that point on, while their daughter, Anne Mette Beckmann, grew up free of want. The Beckmanns spent most of their time in Portugal, where Valdemar lackadaisically looked after the family business, but in 1974 the Portuguese government nationalized his business, and the Beckmann fortune was suddenly wiped out. In 2007, Valdemar died, and since then Mette and Anne have lived in a tiny apartment on the Portuguese coast, trying to get by on a small pension and simmering with resentment for one another. Middle-aged Anne is angry that her mother and father never taught her how to make a life for herself, and elderly Mette is bitter that the life of privilege she once knew is gone forever, and concerned about what will become of her daughter. Filmmaker Eva Mulvad profiles a family struggling to get by after decades free of responsibility in the documentary Det Gode Liv (aka The Good Life), which features home movies of the Beckmanns in their salad days along with extensive interviews with Mette and Anne as they struggle to make ends meet. The film received its North American premiere at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival.
disappointment, narcissist, pension